Gaulimaufry Friday: How I Got A Refund From A Site That Autorenews With No Notice

E bites P

Let’s start out with a photo of a cat. Eowyn biting Peregrin’s nose.

Last month I signed onto a, shall we say, personal services site for the free 14 day trial period. I don’t want to identify the company or the category since I do not want to harm any innocent parties. Or get sued.

I used the site for a few evenings, tried another one, liked it better and more or less forgot about the other one for a couple of weeks. Then I got an email from them informing me that they’d charged my credit card. With no prior notice. Searched all through my account and couldn’t find any page that had my credit card information. And, honestly, I had no recollection of giving it to them (dealing with a sinus infection at the time and was not 100%).

I finally did find the page on which I could delete my account. Which said that I was required to contact customer support to do so. *pause, to just let that lay there for a bit*. So I sent them this via their inhouse message system:

delete_request_account: (competitor’s name) is, BY FAR, the superior site. Not to mention
that you sent me an email saying that you’d automatically charged my credit card
when my 14 day trial was up. How dare you do that without prior notification? And,
actually, since I never gave you a cc number, you couldn’t do it. So it was just a
mindless auto-send. Why would I want to deal with people like you? Why should I
have to fill out this form to close my account and wait “1-2 business days”. If
I’d known that this is how you do business I never ever would have used your site
at all.

Yeah, I was not amused and not feeling good. Can you tell? I got this reply:

Dear Susan,

Thank you for contacting us, I will be happy to assist you.

I have looked at your account and I can see that you have an active Data subscription which will expire on Aug 7 2018 purchased using your — credit card with the last 4 digits —-.
Therefore I would suggest that you keep your account until it expires, so that you can still use all the special features.

Please let me know what you decide.

Looking forward to your reply.

Best regards,

The day after I got their above response I got a renewal notice from National Geographic and included it my next email to the company:

This is how you do it if you have respect for your customers, which you clearly do not. I could find no way on my account to see where my credit card was, either to confirm that you had the info. or not. It was obviously dumb of me to even provide it to you in the first place. But whatever. Keep the money and the karma that goes with that choice or refund it. It’s up to you. But in any case close my account. 

“Dear Susan Fox,

I’d like to offer you a reminder. Because you enrolled in National Geographic’s automatic renewal program with your last order, we’ll soon be renewing your subscription for one year when your current term expires with the December 2017 issue. There’s no need to do anything…you won’t miss a single issue, and you won’t be bothered by any more renewal notices. You’re guaranteed to enjoy Digital access to NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC magazine—at a substantial savings off the cover price. Your credit card will be charged $19.99, unless you notify us otherwise.
Please rest assured that you may cancel anytime during the course of your subscription and receive a full refund for any issues not yet received. If you ever have a question, you can easily reach us online, by telephone, or by mail. Thank you for your continued support of National Geographic.
John MacKethan, Vice President
Consumer & Member Marketing
National Geographic Partners”

The Very Next Day I got this from the company:

Dear Susan Fox,

Your message has been reviewed and will now be forwarded to our billing
department for further processing.

Please note that there is no need for you to respond to this email.


I’ll bet. LOL. And minutes later this came in:

Refund has been Issued


A refund has been issued for ———- Data subscription, free trial two weeks (PPC) (Invoice # 107959130) in the amount of (119.40 USD).

Please allow 5-7 business days for the refund to show in your account.

Best Regards,


E eyes

Eowyn up on one of my studio shelves. She’s been my “Mean Widdle Cat” for fourteen years now.


Categories: Mongolia

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